16 Ways To Wear A Suit To Your Wedding Instead of a Tux

Does a groom have to wear a tuxedo to his wedding? Heck no. We'll show you how to walk down the aisle in a sharp suit.

wedding groom suit instead of tux

We know that your dad wore a tux for his wedding (and so did your Grandpa), but that doesn’t mean you have to follow suit. In fact, a groom ditching the tuxedo and wearing a suit is not only acceptable; it’s a pretty stellar look. Getting married in a suit maintains the formality of the occasion while removing the stuffiness sometimes associated with a tux.

We’re not here to bash the tuxedo; it’s a classic look, and when cut well, a tux can stop the show. But think about how much use you’ll actually get out of your brand new tuxedo after your wedding. Okay, so you’ll rent the tuxedo for your wedding; not a terrible idea, but you’re going to spend money on something that 1. Isn’t yours 2. You have to give back after a single day and 3. Has been worn by someone else.

While it’s going to cost more than a tux rental, buying a suit for your wedding is a much better long-term investment. Not only will you look amazing on your wedding day; you’ll look amazing every time you wear that suit to the office, a business function, or a cocktail party. In short, you’ll get your money’s worth. A well-made, well-cut suit won’t wear out quickly, won’t go out of style, and the possibilities for shirt and tie combinations that fit your personality are endless.

And maybe that’s the greatest difference between the wedding tux and the wedding suit: Personality. There’s usually only one way to wear a tux (although you can choose your rental shoes). A suit is a canvas on which you can paint the look that you want to project to the world. What’s the atmosphere of your wedding? What’s the style? What’s the mood? Your suit can encapsulate it all. On that note, we’ve thrown together some wedding suit inspiration to give you a few ideas as to how you can style your suit on your big day.

Already married? Share what you wore to your wedding in the comments after the article and keep the inspiration list going. 

A Charcoal Suit And Black Tie

It’s almost impossible not to look handsome in this combination. Keep the tie slim but not skinny.

Gray Suit, Gray Tie

Despite wearing primarily gray, you’ll look far from boring. Keep the cut slim, and explore patterns in the suit fabric.

With A White Shirt And White Or Cream Tie

There’s a reason this is such a popular look: it’s clean and versatile. Shades of white and cream go well with almost any suit choice.

With A Vest, No Jacket

Downplay the formality a bit by losing the jacket altogether. This is especially practical for summer weddings when you don’t want to be a standing in a puddle of sweat at the altar.

All Blue Tones

Blue is the perfect marriage (get it?) of formal and informal, and mixing shades of blue creates a look that is rich yet subtle, distinct, yet understated.

Patterned Suit

The black jacket, white shirt combination may be classic, but there’s no rule saying you can’t throw a pattern into the mix. Stick with something simple like this windowpane. It will make a statement without being ostentatious.

Patterned Shirt

If a patterned jacket is too much for you, choose a patterned shirt instead. A pop of pattern still stands out but will keep the simplicity of a solid suit aesthetic.

Sneakers

Yes, you can wear sneakers for your wedding. Sneakers with a suit can bring the formality down a peg without making you look completely casual. They soften the overall tone of the wedding and keep things on the lighthearted side. Just make sure you follow these three rules. They must be: 1. Simple 2. Sleek (think Chucks, not Jordans) 3. NEW.

Ditch The Set

Your wedding suit doesn’t have to be a set you bought off the rack. Mix it up with a jacket and pants that coordinate but are different colors.

Blue Suit With Black Tie

We know that the British like to pair blue with brown, and there’s nothing wrong with it. But black and blue is classic, American style.

Get Creative With Color

Traditionally wedding suits (and tuxedos) are gray, blue, or black. This makes sense given that (also traditionally) the bride is the star of the show. Gray, blue and black allow you to look good without standing out more than your spouse; however, if you want to throw some extra flair into your wedding suit, consider changing up the color.

Rock A Hat

A hat is a bold move on your wedding day, but for those casual, after-ceremony pictures, it’s a good look. No baseball caps. Seriously.

Go Floral (but don’t overdo it)

A floral tie? Absolutely. A floral jacket? Much tougher to pull off – but props if you can do it.

Shorts

If your wedding is in the summer (especially if it’s on the beach), and you want to keep it on the casual side, shorts will keep you comfortable while still looking solid. Keep them shorts slim, get them pressed, and no cargo pockets.

Double Breasted

A double breasted suit jacket looks good on any man, period. Have your tailor take it in in the chest, and don’t be afraid to show a little cuff.

Subtle Pop Of Color

There’s nothing wrong with a sartorially conservative wedding, but throw in at least one pop of color for good measure. A bright belt or pocket square goes a long way with a gray or navy suit.

Wear A Different Suit Than Your Groomsmen

Your groomsmen should look good; you should look better (your partner looks best).

No Tie

Casual wedding? Ditch the tie and go with an open collar.

Pastel

A pastel suit is a great summer wedding option. Keep the shirt white, and make your tie darker than your shirt and jacket.

Three Piece

Like the double breast, a three piece looks good on anyone. Choose a patterned vest to add in some variety.

Tweed

Fall wedding = tweed suit. It’s warm; it’s soft; it’s rugged yet refined. Just like you.

Light Gray Suit, With A Light Gray Tie

The light gray suit with a light gray tie will look stellar with brown shoes and belt OR black. Pair it with a white shirt for a clean, polished look.

With A Tie That Matches The Flowers / Wedding Colors

Want to score some extra points on your wedding day? Match the wedding colors with your tie and pocket square.

A Few Suits To Consider

What did you wear on your wedding day – or what will you wear? Let us know in the comments; bonus points for pics.

Mike Henson is a literature teacher in Hershey, Pennsylvania. He enjoys shooting 35mm film, restoring vintage straight blades, purchasing too many American-made goods, and spending time with his wife and their three daughters.

  • Joey Lenz

    Those “vest, no jacket” outfits look REALLY bad. I am imagining those wedding photos aren’t going to age nearly as well as literally any other of these looks.

    The shorts look would have looked better if they just owned it and went full linen beach mode instead of trying to untuck a dress shirt with a bowtie.

    Lots of wins here, just a few misses IMO.

    • Grant David

      Agreed. Lots of yuck there. I say if you are a groom never have no suit jacket. Always a step up on the the groom. I had 3 piece navy from Suitsupply and my groomsmen just wore a suit. Looks way better than the vest only.

    • Jim Sears

      Agree. Wasn’t go to say anything bc didn’t want to be a hater here… but there are some disaster wedding suit ideas on this list.

  • Jeff

    We had a fall wedding in a barn so I went with a tweed suit from J. Crew. I paired it with a patterned shirt and a solid tie and think we looked pretty fresh. Pics included for bonus points

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/372f899548347280dc437e21582d76fa6f36d2ec19a1f4ea84547d47febc2472.jpg

    • http://www.primermagazine.com/ Andrew

      Hey Jeff! This looks awesome, love the combination. Thanks for sharing!

  • Steve K

    I wore a three piece in Turks And Caicos and was sweating my balls off. Photos look great though. Worth it.

  • Greg Edwards

    Is the wedding Tux an American thing? In the UK at least, it’s not the norm at all. We traditionally tend to go for morning suits with cravats, or more lately, 3 piece suits (I personally wore a made to measure (inexpensive via Aliexpress) blue tweed number for my wedding a couple of years ago.

    • pyrokeet

      Yes it’s some ghastly American thing. I have no idea how they’ve come up with the idea. Of course it’s not the norm in the UK, a tuxedo is of course evening wear. I’ve even seen them doing BROWN TUXEDOS which makes it even worse.
      I’ve only had one friend in UK insisting on tuxedos for her groomsmen… looked weird and terrible.

      • Greg Edwards

        Groomsmen. Another Americanism making it’s presence felt in the UK (no offence meant). I insisted on calling my chaps ‘Ushers’.

        • pyrokeet

          Haha, true!

      • browneagle44 ロベルト

        My cousin’s wedding (mid-90’s maybe?) had white tuxes. Those photos have aged VERY well

        • pyrokeet

          Haha I’m sure they did. Though I’m not sure if you’re being sarcastic or not…

  • pyrokeet

    These are all great suggestions.

    OK as some people have said, some are better than others (shirt and tie but no jacket or waistcoat looks a bit boyish), but every single one of them looks roughly a gajillion times better than a horrible daytime tuxedo. I hope this article helps sway people away from that ghastly and foolish option!

    A shame you’ve not included any more traditional wedding options such as morning dress, but that’s not the title of the article I suppose.

  • browneagle44 ロベルト

    We sported charcoal suits and navy ties at my wedding. Subtle and looked great, especially in the Alabama Fall weather.